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Lay, Skilling going to big house : One for the little guys everywhere

A victory for the little guy this morning in the conviction of Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling for conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud in the Enron scandal.

A life long janitor, secretary, or salesperson at Enron who lost the only retirement money they ever had will never see their money. But they should at least get a sense of justice in seeing Skilling and Lay lose everything they had and possibly sit in prison for a good deal of their remaining years.

As a former trial lawyer, I’m not usually sympathetic to the US Attorney’s and Department of Justice because of the great resources they have to prosecute cases. But on this one, there would have such a sense of ‘the big guys always get away with it’ as far as average Americans were concerned. So congrats to lead prosecutor Sean Berkowitz, Assistant U.S. Attorney’s John Hueston and Rob Adkins as well as the other lawyers and staff who busted your asses on this one. You did us proud.

It may be that the fall of Enron could not have been stopped by Lay, Skilling or other Enron execs. But everyone should have had an equal chance to soften the blow for themselves and their families.

For me, the cross examination where it was disclosed Skilling and Lay were selling their Enron stock while holding onto millions of dollars in other personal assets was the killer blow. Jurors do not check their common sense at the court house steps after hearing stuff like that.

And thanks to the jurors. That’s tough sledding sitting their every day, not to mention being scrutinized on your personal views during the jury selection process.

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